Chandigarh, Oct 3: The Punjab government today approved a Rs 116.45 crore plan for the improvement of slum areas in Ludhiana, Amritsar and Jalandhar districts under Basic Services to Urban Poor (BSUP) and Integrated Housing and Slum Development Programme (IHSDP). A decision to this effect was taken here in a high level meeting held under the chairmanship of Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal.
Mr Badal said Rs 92.72 crore, Rs 11.38 crore and Rs 12.35 crore would be spent for the improvement of the slum areas in Ludhiana, Amritsar and Jalandhar respectively.
Stressing the need for an integrated development approach to ameliorate the conditions of the urban slum dwellers, the Chief Minister directed the officers of the local government to get these projects approved and expedited from the Centre without any delay.
Mr Badal underscored the need to undertake biometric survey of the slum dwellers, videography of the dwelling unit and its occupant, recording fingerprint impressions of the occupants in order to ensure that the resultant benefits flowed to the genuine slum dwellers.
He also desired that the registration of the newly constructed units would be in the name of female member of the family, a step towards woman empowerment.
The Planning Commission had sanctioned Rs 523.10 crore for Ludhiana and Rs 379.10 crore for Amritsar under Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Misssion (JNURM). Besides, Rs 370.40 crore has been sanctioned for small and medium towns of Punjab.
These funds would be spent on improving the water supply, sewerage and sanitation besides providing basic services to the urban poor in the state and an amount of Rs 140 crore would be released this year. Mr Badal pointed out that he had repeatedly urged the Centre to release maximum funds for Punjab during the current financial year, as the previous government had not raised any claim for the funds in the year 2005 and 2006.
Pleading the state's claim, Mr Badal said the other states had already released funds for three years.
Mr Badal said Punjab should be given more funds now as the new government had envisaged many development schemes for the people living in towns and cities.